Diet Busters: Foods that sound healthy, but may be breaking your calorie bank
Diet busters are difficult to spot in the grocery aisles and can even be found in a place as innocent as the produce section! They may have all the right sounding “healthy” phrases on their package, but don’t let that fool you! Although most foods can fit into a healthy diet plan, within moderation, always check labels first! Here’s our list of the top diet busters:
1) Energy Bars
Energy bars can be tricky since some varieties contain enough calories to make them “meal-worthy,” but are consumed as a snack. Some energy bars can sometimes be loaded with calories, fat, and sugar. Be sure to check the label to see if they fit into your overall calorie intake for the day. And if you are eating them as a snack, aim for a low-fat choice that has between 150-200 calories.
2) Granola and Trail Mix
Sure, they sound healthy but can be high in calories, fat, and sugar. Often times, trail mix can contain salty nuts, milk chocolate, and sweetened dried fruit, making it calorie-dense. Take note of serving sizes, they are usually ¼ to ½ cup. Look for versions that are low in added sugar, be sure to stick to a small portion, or simply choose a whole grain, low sugar cereal instead.
3.) Baked Chips
They are a healthier option than the full-fat version, but stick to one or two servings since they still contain the same amount of calories as the original version. If it’s a salty fix you are longing, try whole wheat crackers with peanut butter or low-fat cheese. The added protein will help fill you up.
4.) Salad Dressings
What harm can a few tablespoons of salad dressing do, right? Wrong! Some full-fat dressings can contain up to 90 calories and 15 grams of fat per serving, making that “healthy salad” into a high-calorie indulgence. Instead, choose low calorie dressing, balsamic vinegar, or salsa to top salads.
5) Sports Drinks
Sports drinks are usually intended for people that engage in 90 minutes or more of intense exercise, usually athletes. Why? For starters, they have about 15-30g of sugar per serving plus added electrolytes. For the average exerciser, water is still the best choice to hydrate you during your workouts. And if you’re seeking some flavor, try water with lemon or sparkling flavored water.
Be an informed shopper and be sure to always read labels before making a purchase. And remember that all foods can fit as part of a healthy and well balance diet. Moderation and portion control are the keys to success.